Australian authorities are warning that cyber crime is exploding into a new dimension–from multibillion-dollar international money laundering down to personal Facebook accounts and the iPhone boom, The New Zealand Herald reports.
A survey of 3,000 Australian companies in 2008 revealed 14 percent had reported computer security incidents, but authorities had been notified of only 8 percent of the cases. Police believe many of the companies polled did not report cyber crime to avoid revealing the extend of their exposure, according to the Herald.
Australian Crime Commission Chief Executive John Lawler said the potential for new criminal business had been demonstrated by the popularity of the iPhone. The device has become the third most-used system in the world in the business market and is being used or tested by more than 70 percent of Fortune 100 companies.
Criminals are already targeting the popular smartphone. In May, Italian customs agents dismantled a ring selling counterfeit iPhones produced in China. More recently, London police arrested nine people and found 1,000 iPhones involved in a network using premium phone lines to launder profits and hide identities.
Lawler said Australian authorities were also seeing more fraud against users of social-networking sites.
“Self-disclosure is fashionable and young people often build online profiles that include interests, pets, relationships, travel plans and life stories,” he said, according to the Herald. “Criminals can take such personal information to fraudulently obtain credit.”
The crime commission executive also mentioned how cyber crooks are using keyloggers to target online chat rooms and instant messaging systems to extract personal information for criminal use.